Thursday, 31 March 2011

auf der Nordseek├╝ste

During World War 2, when Great Britain stood alone in Western Europe against Nazi Germany , invasion was a real possibility. Coastal defences were built at possible beachheads, such as these anti-tank blocks near Alnmouth, Northumberland, which, some 70 years later resist in vain  the encroaching waves atop an ever rising North Sea.

Tuesday, 29 March 2011

'Roman' along the river

Why 'Roman'?  Well, this is on the River Tyne with the Roman forts of Segedunum and Arbeia nearby, but on opposite sides of the river.. a great location to go roaming.

Monday, 28 March 2011

Shields Ferry

One of the Shields' Ferries on a slipway for maintenance  at South Shields. Across the waters of the River Tyne can be seen a fishing boat tied up at North Shields Fish Quay and above that is the tall white building called the High Light, once a navigational aid to ships entering the Tyne, but now a private residence.

Saturday, 26 March 2011

Wednesday, 23 March 2011

the Turks Head

The Turks Head pub in Tynemouth was  built in 1850 and has a listed front facade of white tiling.  Inside the pub, in a glass case,  is a stuffed dog called Wandering Willie who is reputed to have been a regular at the pub,on his death in in 1880 the owners of the pub   had him stuffed and displayed, where he remains to this day. The pub is on Front Street which is currently undergoing major road works as can be seen here.

Tuesday, 22 March 2011

Wm. Wight Ltd.

Wm. Wight   was founded after the Second World War by William Wight who provided the local fishing fleet with stores and provisions. It's main  business today is with the general public.

"When I first started you came down at six o'clock in the morning and opened the doors and you had a flood of ships cooks coming in putting in their stores orders for the next day or that night depending on the state of the tides- when these boats went out fishing they had to catch the tides to catch the fish. So the boat came in at seven o'clock in the morning and you had to be out at, say, the fishing grounds for seven o'clock at night, well the steaming time between sometimes they were screaming for the stores because if they got out there and missed the tide and missed the fish they could miss out on a couple hundred boxes of fish which in those days were a lot of money." Martin Wright , the son of the founder.

Monday, 21 March 2011

Spring Flowers

Flowers at a grave at Old Bewick Church, Northumberland. To see the interior of the church click here .The oldest parts of the church date from the 12th-century, but it has been restored several times.

Sunday, 20 March 2011


Fleet, by Irene Brown, is a collection of seven stainless steel collier ships in full sail, set in the water of Market Dock, overlooking the River Tyne at South Shields. A collier was a coal carrying ship. Coal was once the lifeblood of the Tyneside economy.

Saturday, 19 March 2011

North Shields Ferry

In the foreground are the steps of the floating jetty leading to the Shields Ferry which takes foot passengers every half-hour across the River Tyne to South Shields. In the background are old Georgian buildings, part of which were once a Sailor's Home.

Thursday, 17 March 2011

The Side Gallery

The Side Gallery is part of a film & photography collective called Amber. 

The Side Gallery is another of Newcastle's cultural gems and is tucked away down an alleyway off  The Side on Newcastle's quayside. It hosts superb photgraphic exhibitions and is currently showing the tragically poignant Lodz Ghetto Album by Henryk Ross.

Wednesday, 16 March 2011

Get Carter is 40

The 40th anniversary of film Get Carter , starring Michael Caine, was celebrated on Tyneside over the weekend and in particular at the Tyneside Cinema , one of Newcastle's cultural gems. The film was made   on location in and around Newcastle upon Tyne in 1971. The opening sequence of the movie, which features the iconic music score by Roy Budd, can be seen here:  Get Carter . The Tyneside Cinema hosted a special screening featuring a Q&A session between the film's director Mike Hodges  and local writer  Mike Chaplin.

Tuesday, 15 March 2011

Monday, 14 March 2011

Tyne-Tees Steam Shipping Company

Would be travellers  to European North Sea ports such as Hamburg and Rotterdam could once have sailed direct from Newcastle upon Tyne as this preserved painted advertisement on Newcastle's quayside testifies. The timetable shows is from July 1929. Now the only ferry to Europe from the Tyne is the daily one to Amsterdam from North Shields

Wednesday, 9 March 2011

Inner Farne

The Farne Islands are one of Northumberland's  treasures and are home to over 100,000 pairs of nesting seabirds during the Spring and Summer. St. Cuthbert   died on the Farnes on 20 March 687 AD. The Island shown is called the Inner Farne; the picture was taken yesterday during a coastal walk from Seahouses to Bamburgh

Monday, 7 March 2011

Grey Street

These cars were parked on Grey Street, In Newcastle upon Tyne.
Grey Street  was voted as England's finest street in 2005 in a survey of BBC 4 radio listeners and was also considered to be one of the finest Georgian streets in England by renowned architectural expert and writer  Sir Nikolaus Pevsner, known in the business simply as Pevsner.

Saturday, 5 March 2011

Lady's Well, Holystone.

Lady's Well , in the remote hamlet of Holystone, Northumberland is of great antiquity, possibly  dating back to Roman Times. ( click on link for further detail).

A friend in Holystone has been collecting old postcards of the district and he thought it would be a good idea to try and use these in a future  project in support of a local Hospice. The second photo shows our first practice attempt to show old and current  views together, the post card used  is from the early 1900s.

Friday, 4 March 2011

coastal erosion

Coastal erosion is clearly evident here at Druridge Bay, Northumberland, ancient peat beds under  later deposits of sand are now exposed. The problem is not soley caused by rising sea levels but by extensive sand extraction in the past for  Ready Mixed Concrete (RMC).

Thursday, 3 March 2011

Northumberland Coast

This was taken on Ross  Sands which is a beautiful unspoilt and remote beach between Holy Island to the North and Budle Bay to the south. 

Wednesday, 2 March 2011


Coal mining  was once the lifeblood of the North-East's economy. Records of coal mining in the region date back to Roman times and by  1919, there were 223,000 coal miners working in the Northumberland and Durham coalfields. Today there are no mines operating and only a few  open cast works remain. Under the North Sea some coal seams are exposed and coal dust is occasionally swept up on local beaches reminding us of a proud industrial heritage ( click here for detailed historical information)

Tuesday, 1 March 2011